Embedding Disabled By Request

Every day of my life, I scour YouTube for a video to post in the morning. I have no idea if anyone watches them, but it's become a habit and a part of the fabric of the blog. Sometimes, I'm insanely busy, or I get the YouTube equivalent of writer's block -- I desperately can't think of or find anything to post. Sometimes I robo-post the video the night before. Sometimes I post it at the usual 6 a.m. EST.

Of course I also have standards about what I post. I never post camera phone videos with horrible audio. I try not to post video that's poorly encoded. And I hate any YouTube video in which the audio is out of sync.

Anyway, needless to say, I rely upon YouTube for content. So you can imagine how much I hate finding the perfect video only to discover that the record label (or whoever) won't let me embed the video. I'm offering free advertising to thousands of daily readers, and the record label is turning it down.

Damian Kulash from OK Go wrote a New York Times piece about the ridiculousness of the Embedding Disabled By Request option. Labels, Damian explains, earn a royalty for each view that takes place on the YouTube site itself, but not for embedded video. However, they only make around $.004 per view, and when embedding is disabled, views drop by around 90 percent, according to Damian.

This isn't about making an illegal copy of something. This is nothing less than mutually beneficial marketing. Everyone wins. But the record labels are balking.

The labels should actually be paying YouTube to run the labels' videos -- the majors are all basically corporate entities, and this is basically an advertising situation. Instead, the labels are demanding royalties from YouTube for the privilege of promoting the labels' recording artists, and then forbidding other sites from augmenting the reach of the advertisements.

That's completely backwards. No wonder the recording industry is disintegrating. They just don't get it.